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Later that evening, Kadyrbayev put the backpack into a dumpster outside his apartment, authorities say. It took investigators two days of hunting in the New Bedford landfill to find the backpack, its contents intact. Phillipos is accused of lying to investigators when interviewed about the case. He told them that he had not seen anyone take the backpack out of the room, according to authorities.
Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov, both Kazak citizens, are charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice and obstruction of justice. The charges carry possible prison sentences of up to 25 years, as well as deportation back to Kazakhstan. Phillipos, an American, could be sentenced to up to 16 years in prison for two counts of lying to investigators.
The decision comes two days after US District Court Judge George O’Toole Jr. agreed to give Tsarnaev’s defense team more time before deciding whether to request a change of location for the trial. The previous deadline had been Feb. 28; no new date was set.
The filing did not give a reason for the change of date, but the measure appeared to heed the defense’s contention that it should be given until after US Attorney General Eric Holder decides whether the government will seek the death penalty in the case.
Mr. Holder is expected to announce before the end of the month if the government will pursue a death sentence.
Tsarnaev is facing 30 federal charges in connection to the bombing at the Boston Marathon on April 15 as well as the murder of a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer three days later. He has pleaded not guilty to all the charges.